Mormons and Slavery...

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Aug 26, 2007
Central Florida
The Church of Latter Day Saint(Mormons) came of age during the years our nation was struggling with slavery. It has been pointed out that the older churches with a long history also struggled with slavery most of them had schisms over the issue along the North / South divided. The Mormons seem to live with Slavery by waffling on the issue between Pro-slavery and anti-slavery...

To make it clear Joseph Smith was anti-slavery as well as anti abolitionist... link:

Mormonism and slavery

Mormon scripture simultaneously denounces both slavery and abolitionism in general, teaching that it was not right for men to be in bondage to each other,[2] but that one should not interfere with the slaves of others.[4] While in Missouri, Joseph Smith defended slavery, arguing that the Old Testament taught that blacks were cursed with servitude,[11]:22 a belief that was common in America at the time.[12] While promoting the legality of slavery, the church consistently taught against the abuse of slaves and advocated for laws that provided protection.[6] Critics said the church's definition of abuse of slaves was vague and difficult to enforce.[13]

Smith's death...

After Smith's death in 1844, the church went through a succession crisis and split into multiple groups. The main body of the church, which would become the LDS Church, followed Brigham Young who was significantly more pro-slavery than Smith. Young led the Mormons to Utah and formed a theocratic government, under which slavery was legalized and the Indian slave trade was supported. Young promoted slavery,[48] teaching that blacks had been cursed to be "servants of servants" and that Indians needed slavery as part of a process of overcoming a curse placed on their Lamanite ancestors.[citation needed]

Mormons arrived in Utah in the middle of the Mexican–American War; they ignored the Mexican ban on slavery. Instead, they recognized slavery as custom and consistent with the Mormon view on blacks.[54]

The corruption of slavery set in...

Once in Utah, Mormons continued to buy and sell slaves as property. Church members used their slaves to perform labor required for tithing, and sometimes donated them to the church as property.[49][29]:34 Both Young and Heber C. Kimball used the slave labor that had been donated in tithing before granting freedom to the people.[49][29]:52

As historian Max Perry Mueller has written, the Mormons participated extensively in the Indian slave trade as part of their efforts to convert and control Utah's Native American population.[63] Mormons also were confronted in Utah with the practice of the Indian slave trade among regional tribes; it was very prevalent in the area.

The End...

When the American Civil War broke out, Utah sided with the North and many Mormon slave owners returned to Southern States because they were worried that they would lose their slaves.[51] On June 19, 1862 Congress prohibited slavery in all US territories, and on January 1, 1863, Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation. The slaves of the Mormons were incredibly joyful when the news reached that they were free, and many left Utah for other states, particularly California.[49][51]

After the slaves were freed, Young gave several discourses on slavery. He characterized himself as neither an abolitionist nor a pro-slavery man.[6] He criticized both the South for their abuse of slaves and the North for worshiping of blacks. He opposed the American Civil War, calling it useless and that the "cause of human improvement is not in the least advanced" by trying to free the slaves. He predicted the Emancipation Proclamation would fail.[82]

Here is another link that talks about how the Mormons changed their position on Slavery 5 times...

I will list the titles of the five phases...

Phase 1 – Opposition to Slavery in the Book of Mormon

Phase 2 –Detachment towards Slavery in Ohio and Missouri

Phase 3 – Pro-slavery Sympathies in Missouri

Phase 4 – Anti-slavery Position in Nauvoo

Phase 5 – Pro-slavery Position in Utah Territory

I let you read the details and the summary in the link....
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